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updated: 3/19/2018 7:16 PM

One final day to vote: Here's what you need to know

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  • You are allowed to bring newspapers into your polling place, but local election judges may or may not let you use your phone.

    You are allowed to bring newspapers into your polling place, but local election judges may or may not let you use your phone.
    AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, 2012

  • Daily Herald file photo

    Daily Herald file photo

 
 

Voters have a final chance Tuesday to choose who in November will face off for seats in Congress, for governor and the Illinois legislature, and for county boards.

Decisions made by voters ultimately will set up suburban campaigns for the Nov. 6 general election, including some that could be among the most-watched in the country.

Suburban voters have big decisions to make elsewhere on the ballot, too, with referendums in a number of towns, fire districts and school districts.

Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday. Here are some things that will help you cast your vote. And after the polls close Tuesday, check back at dailyherald.com for full results.

What's on your ballot?

You also can check online to find whether you are registered, your polling place on Election Day and your sample ballot. Check here for Aurora, Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County,

McHenry County and Will County.

Which political party?

Voters in primaries must declare their political party before receiving a ballot. Depending on party affiliation, the ballot will focus solely on Democratic or Republican candidates. What ballot you pull is public record, but whom you vote for isn't.

Those who just want to vote on referendums can ask for a nonpartisan ballot.

Can I register?

You can register and cast a ballot at the same time if you're a U.S. citizen and present two forms of identification, one of which must have your address on it. Examples include a passport or military I.D., driver's license, college or work ID, vehicle registration, lease, insurance card, bank statement or utility bill.

If you already are registered you do not routinely need identification to vote. However, an election judge can ask for identification in certain circumstances, such as if a previously mailed in registration form is incomplete.

Where should college students vote?

College students can register to vote at home or where they go to school. But if you have an aid or tuition package that requires residency, check with your school to make sure changing your registration won't jeopardize that, says vote.org.

Can I bring in a phone or newspapers?

Newspapers, yes (so feel free to bring the list of Daily Herald endorsements). As for your cellphone, it depends. There is no state law prohibiting cellphones, Illinois State Board of Election general counsel Ken Menzel said. But local authorities can set rules, and some suburban polling places reportedly aren't allowing phones, so it's best to do your research and write down your picks before you arrive. You're not allowed to make or receive phone calls while inside the polling place. If you make a phone call and slip into a conversation about the candidates, it's considered electioneering, which is illegal.

Turnout

It could be higher than in 2014's gubernatorial primaries, if suburban Cook County is an indication. A record number of people registered to vote and a record number cast early votes in Cook County, where turnout was just 16 percent in 2014.

Provisional ballots

If questions are raised at the polls about a voter's registration or identity, the voter can fill out a provisional ballot. While it is the same as the normal ballot, it will not be counted until the election authority has determined the voter is eligible to vote. The authority has 14 days to determine eligibility, and voters have two days after voting to provide additional information.

Electioneering

No one is allowed to attempt to influence a voter within 100 feet of the polling place, among other rules. On Tuesday, any suspicious or illegal activity can be reported to the Illinois attorney general's office at (866) 536-3496.

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